UK's Pravasi award winners honoured

Two prominent British Indian entrepreneurs have been felicicated here at a special ceremony for their contribution to education and community services.

London: Two prominent British Indian entrepreneurs have been felicicated here at a special ceremony for their contribution to education and community services.

Lord Raj Loomba, the executive chairman of clothing firm Rinku Group, was recognised for his contribution in the field of public and community service and Professor Nathu Ram Purie, founder of the Purico Group of companies, was recognised for his contribution in the fields of education and community service.

The two had been awarded with Pravasi Bharat Samman in India earlier this month for their social work.

"This is the most important award given by the Government of India to members of the Indian Diaspora. It recognises the achievements of Lord Loomba and Prof Purie and to quote the Prime Minister (Narendra Modi), India is global because you do," said Indian High Commissioner to the UK Rajan Mathai, Loomba, who set up the Loomba Trust to help widows in India, described the award as an unexpected honour.

"To receive an honour from your own people and community means a lot. I am glad that my efforts to help widows in India have been highlighted and I am proud to say that our project in Varanasi, the home India's widows, will help support nearly 45,000 widows," he said.

Purie spoke about his commitment towards education in India and setting up schools in regions like Assam.

"I was staggered when I got the phonecall about this award. I have never done anything for awards but for a simple reason ? which is to sleep easy at night. I felt it is time I did something useful with my money," he said.

Both philanthropists had been presented with their award at the Pravasi Bhartiya Divas Convention in Gandhinagar, Gujarat, on January 9 along with 13 other awardees from the Indian Diaspora in other countries by the Vice-President of India, Mohammed Hamid Ansari.

The total number of PBS awardees from the UK has now risen to 13.  

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